Batik of Java: A Visual Journey

Join us on this visual feast of Indonesian textiles as we explore several working studios on the Island of Java. ‘Batik of Java: A Visual Journey’ explores the world of batik from early ‘Nitik’ dotted patterns through contemporary explorations in fashion and installation art.



Batik Process: Step by Step

We begin with an overview of the batik making process, step by step. We explore early patterning and the influences of culture and trade on both design and choice of color.

We visit a family in Ambarawa, north Java, who produce indigo pigment to supply to numerous workshops across Java. From there we visit a collective of artisans in Central Java who take us through then entire process with rich narrative and stunning visuals along the way. We learn about their interesting past and their ideas for the future.

We explore the range of traditional natural colors used in early Indonesian batik as well as the plants used to make them. We see the influence between the design motifs and the lives of the artisan makers who make these rich patterned cloths.

The Artisan and their Craft

Once we have explored the process of batik, we move on to look at the work of four talented artisans and groups making a living with batik. We look at historical patterns being masterfully recreated, as well as contemporary styles influenced by a love of Asian Art.

The film “BATIK OF JAVA: A VISUAL JOURNEY” offers a wonderful overview into the national treasure of Indonesia. A wonderful opportunity to learn batik visually, and an excellent basis for moving on to appreciate some of the many books on batik, surface design, and Indonesian Art & Culture.

With thanks to the Asian Art Museum (San Francisco), the American Indonesian Cultural & Educational Foundation (New York), Wayne Forrest, Annegret Haake, Brigitte Willach, Rudolf Smend, Inger McCabe Elliott, Sue & Dennis Richardson, the World Shibori Network, Yoshiko Wada, The Indonesian Consulate of San Francisco, Gwen Jones and Hafidz Effendi for their support and assistance in this project.